Britney Spears has teamed up with legendary photographer/director Herb Ritts on a video for the ballad “Don’t Let Me Be the Last to Know,” her fourth video from the eight-times platinum, Oops! . . . I Did It Again. “She just wanted to do something fresh,” says Ritts, who was immediately won over by Spears’ determination, not to mention her acting ability. “There was one outfit, no dancing, and that meant that it boiled down to her. She really had to act the song, and she was very impressive.”
Ritts, best known for his still photography, made a splash in the video world by directing Madonna’s “Cherish” video in 1989. He then did Chris Isaak’s “Wicked Game” and Janet Jackson’s “Love Will Never Do (Without You).”
While his videos are usually filmed in black and white, Ritts decided to shoot “Don’t Let Me Be the Last to Know” in color. But, just like the Madonna and Isaak videos, the cast and crew went seaside to film Spears.
“I shot it outside of Miami on an isolated beach,” he says. “We built a funky beach shack.” This is where Britney hooks up with a twenty-three-year-old, French model/actor, and the concept closely follows the song’s lyrics, which were written by Shania Twain and her husband, producer Mutt Lange. “The story is, pretty much, Britney longing for him to tell her the words,” says Ritts. “The chemistry between them was great. They got along terrificly.”
The “Don’t Let Me Be…” video, which Brit says “was the funnest video I’ve ever done,” will debut on MTV in mid-February. Around that time, Spears will fly to Sweden to record a few tracks with teen-pop hit-maker Max Martin for her next album, which is due in November.